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Porsche Unveils New 911 RSR

Naturally-aspirated Porsche 911 RSR GTE unveiled ahead of September race debut…

Photo: Porsche

Porsche has officially launched the next-generation Porsche 911 RSR-19 that will debut in the FIA World Endurance Championship later this year.

The car, which has been in development since 2017, was revealed at the Goodwood Festival of Speed on Saturday afternoon.

It replaces the previous-gen 911 RSR that made its first race appearance two years ago and went on to win the 2018-19 WEC drivers’ and manufacturers’ titles, as well as the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

The new car features an updated version of the outgoing car’s six-cylinder naturally-aspirated boxer engine with a slightly larger displacement of 4.194 liters, which the manufacturer says is the largest to ever be mounted to a 911 model post-works.

When the car’s existence was revealed last year, it was initially thought that Porsche might switch to a turbo configuration in line with most of its GTE rivals.

However, it has chosen to stick with the method of choice found in all its previous models for the formula.

As was the case in the outgoing car, the 911 RSR-19 has its engine mounted right in front of the rear axle.

A key change is the repositioning of the exhaust pipes to exit on each side in front of the rear wheels, which Porsche says created extra space for modifications to the rear diffuser that in turn provides additional downforce.

Improvements and reworkings have also been applied to the car’s aerodynamic profile, six-speed gearbox and collision warning system. 

Director of Porsche’s factory GT motorsport division, Pascal Zurlinden, said that 95 percent of the car is new.

“The only components that we’ve kept unchanged from the predecessor are the headlights, brake system, clutch, driver’s seat and parts of the suspension,” he explained.

“We’ve extensively analyzed all factory and customer campaigns with the Porsche 911 RSR.

“Our engineers noticed room for improvement in a number of areas. We have made significant progress in the development of our car for the next three-year homologation period, especially in the complex areas of driveability, efficiency, durability and serviceability.”

The car made its track debut at Porsche’s Weissach facility last August, while it conducted its first endurance test in March.

This involved 30 hours of continuous running at Paul Ricard, including inputs from both the WEC-based Manthey and IMSA-based CORE operating teams, with the car covering some 6,000 km in total.

It was recently spotted testing at Monza, where the new exhaust layout and reworked aero profile were photographed.

“In developing the new Porsche 911 RSR, substantial insights were garnered and adopted from the extremely successful race outings of its predecessor,” said Porsche Motorsport vice president Fritz Enzinger.

“Since 2017 the 911 RSR has yielded us more than 20 class wins in the world championship as well as at long-distance series in North America and Europe.

“Our job in development was to make a very good car even better. The engineers at Weissach have perfectly implemented this in every aspect.”

The car’s first race is the 4 Hours of Silverstone in September, while it is set to make its North American debut in the 2020 Rolex 24 at Daytona.

Photo: Porsche

Photo: Porsche

Photo: Porsche

Daniel Lloyd is a UK-based reporter for Sportscar365 and e-racing365, with a focus on the FIA World Endurance Championship and various electric racing series.

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